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Posts tagged ‘God’

Surely, You Can!

Praise The Lord

“Praise the LORD! Praise The LORD, O my soul!

I will praise the LORD, as long as I live;

Surely, you can

Surely, you can

I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.

Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.

When his breath departs, he returns to the earth; on that day his plans perish.

Blessed is he whose help is the Lord God of Jacob,

whose hope is in the Lord his God, who made the heaven and the earth,

the sea and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever;

who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry.”

Psalm 146:1-7 (ESV)

You can praise God in your heart

You can praise God at work (in your mind)

You can praise God at home

You can praise God while driving

You can praise God in your fellowship group (church).

And if you are in UK,

You can join us on Sundays (10 am -12 noon)

At: Clifton Village Hall, Nottingham NG11 8EB

To praise the Lord;

You can adapt this post for your use in your group;

(Permission to use granted)

You can praise the Lord anywhere.

If anyone asks you why, you can always say, “Because I can”

N/B: This post is also published on http://www.gracefulvoice.com

Be Strong – Change 1

Warning: The Post you are about to read is capable of transforming your life.

Change 2

Change 2

N/B: You can remove the “Egyptians” in the scripture quoted above and put your challenges, struggles, disappointments, sickness, barrenness, and emptiness in its place. (put anything that has been bothering you endlessly)

God is able to change your situation – today is your day for change.! Let God handle it.

 

Understanding Signs and Wonders

Scripture Reference: Jer. 33:2-3. Mark 16:15-18. Jer.32:17-22.

God does signs and wonders in us and through us. Signs and wonders are hallmark of the Christian faith; they are not an appendage to it and they should be our constant realities. From birth to death, Jesus’ life was about signs and wonders.

Isaiah 8:18, says, “Behold, I and the children whom the Lord hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the Lord of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.” (KJV)

Mark 16:17-18, says, “And these signs shall follow them that believe; in my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (KJV)

The above scripture tells us what the Lord has for us with regard to signs and wonders. Believers should walk in signs and wonders as a mark of faith – (it is like a birth right.)

What are signs and wonders?

Signs and wonders are supernatural intervention in the lives of people; nations and in creation. They happen when God turns around the situation of things to suit has purpose. For example, God changed the course of time when Joshua asked for it during a battle he fought with the Amalekites.

Joshua 10:12, says, “Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel: “Sun, stand still over Gibeon; And Moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”

The virgin birth and resurrection of Jesus were signs and wonders.

.Isaiah 7:10-14 says, “Moreover the Lord spoke again to Ahaz, saying, “Ask a sign for yourself from the Lord your God; ask it either in the depth or in the height above.” But Ahaz said, “I will not ask, nor will I test the Lord!” Then he said, “Hear now, O house of David! Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will you weary my God also?  Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”

The healing and deliverance done by Jesus were signs and wonders.

Acts 10:34-41, says, “Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him. The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ—He is Lord of all— that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree. Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly, not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead”

Exodus 4:28-31; Exodus Chapter 7 – Chapter 14 shows the Signs and Wonders performed in Egypt during the time of Moses.

The Gospels contain Jesus’ miracles. For example,

John 11:1-40 – Jesus raised Lazarus

Acts 3:1-9, states the healing of Lamed man at the gate called beautiful

Why did Jesus delay going to heal Lazarus?

He wanted to show us something – signs and wonders. God grows his kingdom using signs and wonders.

How to flow in signs and wonders

Some scriptures to read: Mark 16:17; Isaiah 42:10-20; Isaiah 55:8-11; john 11:39-47; Mk. 2:3-12.

All believers can partake in signs and wonders. It is a privilege of the new life. However, it is not everyone that does; that is because many believers don’t understand the place of signs and wonders in the Kingdom. It is the supernatural, the signs and wonders that show forth the glory of God. They sign-post people to God. Christianity is all about signs and wonders.

To flow in signs and wonders the following are important:

You must connect with the Source of all creation; the one that has all the power and dominion. That is God. He is in-charge of everything in heaven and on earth. Psalm 24:1-2.

You need to know God better – Prayerful study of the word and fellowship with God is essential.

You must understand the process: (do your part and let God do his part). Many people are more concerned about themselves that they undermine God. Signs and wonders belong to God and he is never afraid of anything or anyone. Dan.4:34-35.

The right environment: Heb.11:6.You must come believing; you must come with praise and worship; John11:41-42. You must be prayerful and obedient to God. It not our agenda – it is all about God.

You must come with expectations. It will be to you according to your faith.

You must give all the glory to God.

When signs and wonders happen, you must turn the attention to God. Acts 3:11-16. This is very crucial and must never be compromised.

You must use them to witness to people about salvation of their souls.

You must focus on God not on your experience or that of other people. It is all about what God wants to do now.

God bless you.

Ref.

All scripture quotes are from http://www.biblegateway.com

Leadership: The Power to Take Up New Responsibilities

We all love to be lifted and to assume higher responsibilities especially if they are honourable and very rewarding. Sometimes we are called to take up responsibilities we are not fully prepared to (in our own eyes). These responsibilities can be in the family, in the community, at work or in the place of worship; they can pose a very big challenge really if you are the kind of person who is mindful of what is expected of you. Joshua, the son of Nun found himself saddled with such a responsibility and was very troubled.

English: Moses Blesses Joshua Before the High ...

English: Moses Blesses Joshua Before the High Priest, as in Numbers 27:22, by James Tissot (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, it came to pass that the Lord spoke to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, saying:  “Moses My servant is dead. Now therefore, arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, to the land which I am giving to them—the children of Israel. Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you, as I said to Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the River Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your territory. No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:1-9 (NKJV).

Joshua knew all the troubles Moses passed through leading the Israelites and had never imagined the mantle would fall on him to carry on the job after Moses. He was aware of the external pressures and wars ahead; the assignment was overwhelming.

Solomon had the same concerns stepping into the shoes of David. Who but Absalom and Adonijah could assume that it was an easy job leading Israel? ( they were two young men who saw only the glamour of leadership without a thought about the responsibilities that goes with it).

1 Kings 2:28-35, says, “Then King David answered and said, “Call Bathsheba to me.” So she came into the king’s presence and stood before the king. And the king took an oath and said, “As the Lord lives, who has redeemed my life from every distress, just as I swore to you by the Lord God of Israel, saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place,’ so I certainly will do this day.”

Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and paid homage to the king, and said, “Let my lord King David live forever!”

And King David said, “Call to me Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada.” So they came before the king. The king also said to them, “Take with you the servants of your lord, and have Solomon my son ride on my own mule, and take him down to Gihon. There let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel; and blow the horn, and say, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ Then you shall come up after him, and he shall come and sit on my throne, and he shall be king in my place. For I have appointed him to be ruler over Israel and Judah.”

You may want to read the whole story in 1 Kings Chapters 1 and 2.

Solomon had to turn to God for help. 1 Kings 2:3-15, says “And Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David, except that he sacrificed and burned incense at the high places.

Now the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place: Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask! What shall I give you?”

And Solomon said: “You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in truth, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with You; You have continued this great kindness for him, and You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. Now, O Lord my God, You have made Your servant king instead of my father David, but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a great people, too numerous to be numbered or counted. Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”

The speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. Then God said to him: “Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice,behold, I have done according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you. And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days. So if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.”

Then Solomon awoke; and indeed it had been a dream. And he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, offered up burnt offerings, offered peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants.”

Many times, some people get carried away with self and make erroneous presumptions that they can handle life challenges on their own. They trust their training, exposures, counsellors, human wisdom and strength to see them through but the word of God says, “There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength.

A horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength.

 Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.” Ps. 33:16-19. (KJV)

  • It is not weakness to turn to the Lord when you find yourself saddled with a big responsibility, especially when it involves leading and handling people. God strengthened Joshua and Solomon when they assumed enormous leadership responsibilities. God helped them. Joshua said later in life, “Behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth. And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the Lord your God spoke concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed.” Joshua 23:14 (NKJV) If the wisdom and ways of humans were enough there won’t be many crisis in the world today; whether they are political, economic or social problems.
  • There is need to study and patience in the new assignment committed to you. The internet provides good access to do research and get vital tools to work with. Study the word of God and appropriate his promises.
  • There is this uneasiness to look behind one’s shoulders to see who might be monitoring your efforts secretly. It is important to be courageous and boldly go about your work.
  • It is not everybody that will appreciate your new lifting. You will have to go on with it; your success doesn’t even guarantee the approval of everybody.
  • You need to do your work with the fear of the Lord. Don’t be carried away with pride or undermined others.
  • Don’t waste your time criticizing your predecessors. Whatever thing they did or fail to do is part of history. You are now in charge; do your job.
  • Learn to carry other people along. Synergy produces better results.
  • Learn to create a balance between work and other aspects of life. Avoid burn-out.

If you have accepted the Lord as your Lord and saviour, you need to allow him to take control of every aspect of your life. He is able to help and comfort you. If you have not accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and saviour, do it today and you will have access to his limitless grace and power.

God will give you the power to succeed in every new responsibility; trust him.

Bible quotes: from www.biblegateway.com

Hearing From God: – How to deal with the conflicts it brings

Figures 047 The Lord Appears to Moses in a Bur...

Figures 047 The Lord Appears to Moses in a Burning Bush (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is your responsibility to act on the word of God. What produces result is taking the right actions about the word you heard from God. Many people subject the word of God to them, to the approval of other people; but the truth is that God will not hold anyone accountable on your behalf about what you do with the words he spoke to you. There are a lot of scriptures to buttress this.

“Then the king said to the man of God, “Come home with me and refresh yourself, and I will give you a reward.” But the man of God said to the king, “If you were to give me half your house, I would not go in with you; nor would I eat bread nor drink water in this place. For so it was commanded me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the same way you came.’” So he went another way and did not return by the way he came to Bethel. Now an old prophet dwelt in Bethel, and his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel; they also told their father the words which he had spoken to the king. And their father said to them, “Which way did he go?” For his sons had seenwhich way the man of God went who came from Judah. Then he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” So they saddled the donkey for him; and he rode on it, and went after the man of God, and found him sitting under an oak. Then he said to him, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?” And he said, “I am.” Then he said to him, “Come home with me and eat bread.” And he said, “I cannot return with you nor go in with you; neither can I eat bread nor drink water with you in this place. For I have been told by the word of the Lord, ‘You shall not eat bread nor drink water there, nor return by going the way you came.’” He said to him, “I too am a prophet as you are, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.’” (He was lying to him.) So he went back with him, and ate bread in his house, and drank water. Now it happened, as they sat at the table, that the word of the Lord came to the prophet who had brought him back; and he cried out to the man of God who came from Judah, saying, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Because you have disobeyed the word of the Lord, and have not kept the commandment which the Lord your God commanded you, but you came back, ate bread, and drank water in the place of which the Lord said to you, “Eat no bread and drink no water,” your corpse shall not come to the tomb of your fathers.’” So it was, after he had eaten bread and after he had drunk, that he saddled the donkey for him, the prophet whom he had brought back. When he was gone, a lion met him on the road and killed him. And his corpse was thrown on the road, and the donkey stood by it. The lion also stood by the corpse. And there, men passed by and saw the corpse thrown on the road, and the lion standing by the corpse. Then they went and told it in the city where the old prophet dwelt. Now when the prophet who had brought him back from the way heard it, he said, “It is the man of God who was disobedient to the word of the Lord. Therefore the Lord has delivered him to the lion, which has torn him and killed him, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke to him.”” 1 Kings 13:7-26 (NKJV)

The above scripture is clear on who takes the responsibility about the word God speaks to us. The old prophet, despite his part in the horrible episode, did not claim any responsibility.

These are some conflicts that go with hearing from God.

· It is not everyone that is interested in what you heard. Their attitude might discourage you.

· Some people are jealous of such experiences and may not welcome your excitement. 1 Kings 22:19 -28, says, “Then Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by, on His right hand and on His left. And the Lord said, ‘Who will persuade Ahab to go up, that he may fall at Ramoth Gilead?’ So one spoke in this manner, and another spoke in that manner. Then a spirit came forward and stood before the Lord, and said, ‘I will persuade him.’ The Lord said to him, ‘In what way?’ So he said, ‘I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And the Lord said, ‘You shall persuade him, and also prevail. Go out and do so.’ Therefore look! The Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these prophets of yours, and the Lord has declared disaster against you.” Now Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah went near and struck Micaiah on the cheek, and said, “Which way did the spirit from the Lord go from me to speak to you?” And Micaiah said, “Indeed, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide!” So the king of Israel said, “Take Micaiah, and return him to Amon the governor of the city and to Joash the king’s son; and say, ‘Thus says the king: “Put this fellow in prison, and feed him with bread of affliction and water of affliction, until I come in peace.” But Micaiah said, “If you ever return in peace, the Lord has not spoken by me.” And he said, “Take heed, all you people!” (NKJV).

Zedekiah was not going to keep quiet and have Micaiah chatter away with “thus says the Lord”. He did not want to lose face. He wanted the King to believe he had “a monopoly of the spirit of God”; he wanted to protect his deception. So be careful, there are surprises out there.

· You might be upstaging some strongholds. That was the experience of Moses in Egypt when he went to Pharaoh to ask for Israelites release from slavery and it did not go unopposed. “Afterward Moses and Aaron went in and told Pharaoh, “Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘Let My people go, that they may hold a feast to Me in the wilderness.’” And Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, nor will I let Israel go.” So they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please, let us go three days’ journey into the desert and sacrifice to the Lord our God, lest He fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword.” Then the king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why do you take the people from their work? Get back to your labor.” And Pharaoh said, “Look, the people of the land are many now, and you make them rest from their labor!” Exodus 5:1-4 (NKJV).

The word of God comes to deal with some issues in life. There are usually authorities and powers responsible for challenges of life and they will not just watch you wrestle that hold from them without a fight. In the New Testament it cost John the Baptist his life.

· There are unseen forces that challenge the word of God. Gen 3:1-5, says, “Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’’ Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

· There are some inner struggles within you that could come up from time to time to wrestle the word of God from you, especially at your low-moments. They include pressures from the lust flesh, fear, the lust of the eyes and doubt.

We must learn to handle all these conflicts with prayer, the study of the word and the power of the Holy Spirit. The Lord wants you to understand these things and that is why this article was written and that is why you are reading it; as you meditate on these words and run it through your past experiences, it will help you to achieve great heights in your walk with God.

It Was Such A Bad!

Jesus and Saint Peter, Gospel of Matthew 4.18-...

Jesus and Saint Peter, Gospel of Matthew 4.18-20 Français : Jésus et Saint Pierre, Évangile selon Matthieu 4.18-20 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Many of us are familiar with situations where expectations fail to come through as planned. There were days when things went haywire and everything fell apart.  It could be such occasions where an unguarded moment of “madness” made everything to break and fall at the wrong places.  Many of such experiences usually linger around longer than we hope they should and many people struggle to recover from them for a long period of time. It reminds me of the day Peter had an encounter with Jesus.

“When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net” Luke5:4-5 (NKJV)

Peter and his friends were fishermen and were at work throughout the night in the lake. It was a day that their skills did not yield any good return on investment. Their expectation failed, their plans and hopes were dashed and their customers had nothing to buy that day and were extremely disappointed. Frustration was written all over them as they washed their nets. You can comprehend their level of frustration from Peter’s word in the scripture quoted above; “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing.” It was such a bad day.

When Jesus came and the multitude gather the scripture said, he “saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets. Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat.” Luke5:2-3 (NKJV)

It was the boat that must have received a lot of backlashes from its owner (you know how we heap blames and hisses on people and things to easy our frustration – call it transfer of aggression, if you like). It was one of the boats that their owners had quickly forgotten its usefulness in the good old days. It became the Master’s vessel at the time Jesus borrowed it. Peter must have been consumed in the gracious words that proceed from the graceful voice of Jesus. The crowd that followed Jesus swallowed up the usual fish buyers and transformed the negative atmosphere created by unfruitful labour. Peter’s pains suddenly resurfaced when Jesus turned to him and said ““Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”  He retorted “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” His heart was full of faith in Jesus because of the words he heard him speak but his head was full of pain and doubt because of his bad night at work. He was at a cross-road.

Peter’s faith in Jesus prevailed; he said “nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” I am glad he did. It was a bad night but the day needn’t end like that! Every bad experience is always in the past, the future has no records except the ones people export into it. The future is a gift from God and there are gracious words from the Master that we can act on, regardless of our bad days. You may have a head full of fears and doubt but you can nonetheless choose to heed the graceful voice. Sometimes, people assume that where there is faith, there should be no struggles with doubt; but that is not the reality, the truth is that faith is, a trust in God in the presence of great evidence of a likely failure and embarrassment.

I don’t know what you are going through at the moment; there is hardly any person without a life challenge. Some people, despite their great fame and wealth are being eaten up by sickness; sickness that the very best of medical personnel has no solutions for ; Like the woman in Luke 8:43, “And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any” (KJV). There are people who have been blessed with children and are struggling to feed them while some people are traversing land and sea looking for the fruit of the womb. Many young people are looking for jobs while many others are fed up with their jobs. Many marriages and relationships are in shambles and many governments are helpless about the situations in their countries. Who does not have a need?

You may be wondering who cares and why is it my concern? God cares. God loves you and I am sent by God to reach you with this message. I want to be your friend. We may never meet but I will be praying   for you that God will visit you and turn around the bad day. Psalm 30:5 says, “…….His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.”

You may wish to hear God speak to you; why not read the Bible? Read the Book of Mark and see the things Jesus did. He can do something for you too.

You may wish to tell God about your challenges; God is already waiting for you to come.  Matt.7:7-11; Matt. 11:28 (NKJV)

God fixes bad days. Those who turn to him always come through with a smile and surprise. Peter did. Luke5: 4-8, says, “When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” (NKJV)

Reference:

All scriptures used are from www.biblegateway.com

What Does The Future Hold? – Seek The Mind of God

English: Scroll of the Psalms

English: Scroll of the Psalms (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The year is running to an end and a lot of people are looking ahead for what the future holds. Many people will take time to reflect on their lives and make New Year resolution; of cause, many of such resolutions are broken soon after they were made. The word of God says that you must overcome the strongman before you can take his place. “It is not by might, not by power but by my Spirit, says the Lord.”

The believers’ approach to issues of the future is to seek the mind of the Lord. James 4:13-16 says, “Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.  Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.” (NKJV)

The reasons why you should trust the Lord with your future: Jer. 29:11 says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (NKJV) God is interested in you and his thought for you is a good thought. God want things to go well with you. It is important to know that we know very little about how things will generally turn-out. For instant, in United Kingdom, there were forecast about drought in the year 2012, however, the year has become the wettest since record started.

The following are some important steps you can take about the future.

  • Psalm 37: 3-4 says, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. (NKJV)
  • Prov. 3:7-8, says, “Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh,and strength to your bones.” (NKJV)
  • Psalm 1:1-4, says, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither, and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
  • Get your information right. Don’t go through the future with on with confusing information. If you didn’t get it right, go back to God.
  • Don’t allow other people’s opinion of you ruin your life. Find out the plan God has for your life and follow it. You seek for it through prayers, studying the word of God, meditation on the word and obedience.
  • Be willing to repent and ask for forgiveness when you miss it. Sin is a reproach to people. Prov. 14:34 says, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” (NKJV)
  • Don’t seek unwholesome popularity that is against righteousness. “Don’t just be a man of the people” Men may appoint you to a post but it is God that positions people for greatness.
  • Don’t just follow the bandwagon. Exodus 23:2 says, “Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shalt thou speak in a cause to decline after many to wrest judgment:” (KJV)
  • Be thankful. 1 Thess. 5:18 says. “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” (NKJV)
  • Be prayerful: 1 Thess. 5:17 says, “Pray without ceasing” (KJV)

Phil. 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” (KJV)

Col. 4:2 says, “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving.” (KJV)

Psalm 37: 5, says “Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass” (KJV)

  • Trust God to help you. Psalm 37:3 says, “Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.” (KJV).
  • Do your work honestly, with integrity and be focused. 1 Thess.4:11-12 says, “….. make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: you should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you,so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.” (NIV)
  • Stay away from other gods. Jer.25:6 says “And go not after other gods to serve them, and to worship them, and provoke me not to anger with the works of your hands; and I will do you no hurt” (KJV)
  • Service the Lord with gladness.

It is my prayer that all will go well with you in the coming year; as the scripture says, in Isaiah 3:10 ““Say to the righteous that it shall be well with them,
For they shall eat the fruit of their doings.” (NKJV)

Farewell and God bless you.

I Won’t Be Denied!

John 10.10 says “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).” AMP.

I want you to imagine yourself as a hard working person, working under the most tasking, odious and humiliating conditions. You were willing to go through the most tedious experience of your life.

I imagine you did it to provide the essential things of life for your children and at the end of the period of your work you collected your pay and returned home to your family, happy that they will enjoy the fruit of your labour. You are a good parent.

I want you to imagine also taking one of your children to the supermarket to buy something he/she wanted. You gladly went to the counter to pay. Now you have paid for the item and packed it but suddenly someone comes by and collects the item you purchased for your child and starts walking away with it; what will you do? I don’t know what you would have done but I know what I will do. I will have shouted at the invader, I will ran after him and call the police if need be and I would have fought to recover the item.

Luke 18:1-8 “Also [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up). He said, In a certain city there was a judge who neither reverenced and feared God nor respected or considered man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, Protect and defend and give me justice against my adversary. And for a time he would not; but later he said to himself, Though I have neither reverence or fear for God nor respect or consideration for man, Yet because this widow continues to bother me, I will defend and protect and avenge her, lest she give meintolerable annoyance and wear me out by her continual coming or at the last she come and rail on me orassault me or strangle me. Then the Lord said, Listen to what the unjust judge says! And will not [our just] God defend and protect and avenge His elect (His chosen ones), who cry to Him day and night? Will He defer them and delay help on their behalf? I tell you, He will defend and protect and avenge them speedily. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find [persistence in] faith on the earth?” AMP

I learnt this lesson and made up my mind: “I won’t be denied”. Jesus paid a high price for my good. My salvation is included, John 3:16 says “God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life.” GW; my health is included, I peter 2:24 says “who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.” NKJV;  my finances are included, 2 Cor.8:9 Say “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.” NKJV, and many more. I shall not be denied. It is important to me because the sufferings of Christ were not in a hidden place.

1 Peter 5:1 says “I appeal to your spiritual leaders.I make this appeal as a spiritual leader who also witnessed Christ’s sufferings and will share in the glory that will be revealed.” GW

Luke 24:15-20 says “While they were talking, Jesus approached them and began walking with them. Although they saw him, they didn’t recognize him. He asked them, “What are you discussing?” They stopped and looked very sad. One of them, Cleopas, replied, “Are you the only one in Jerusalem who doesn’t know what has happened recently?” “What happened?” he asked. They said to him, “We were discussing what happened to Jesus from Nazareth. He was a powerful prophet in what he did and said in the sight of God and all the people. Our chief priests and rulers had him condemned to death and crucified.” GW

I will not be denied. The devil, his demons and their agents cannot hold me back. God is with me I cannot be denied. Matthew 28:20b says ““And remember that I am always with you until the end of time.”” GW. God is committed to helping me possess my possessions, that is what Luke 18: 1-8 is talking about.

You need the knowledge of the word of God to actualise this. Study the Bible and get committed to what it says.

You must insist in prayers that you must have what God says you should have. The devil is not a gentleman, don’t treat him like one.

You must act and live by faith. God has made available to you all that is needed for a good life on earth. That is what John 10; 10b is talking about. Don’t be denied.

 

 

The “god Figures”

Jesus

Jesus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Bible clearly points out that God does not want us to make images of him in any form. Making images of gods is very common all over the world and that dates back to early human history. These images commonly called idols are worshiped by some and despised by others. People’s attitudes towards them have been judges variously all over history. For example:

“King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, sixty cubits high and six cubits wide, and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. He then summoned the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials to come to the dedication of the image he had set up. So the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials assembled for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up, and they stood before it.

Then the herald loudly proclaimed, “Nations and peoples of every language, this is what you are commanded to do: As soon as you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, you must fall down and worship the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. Whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.” Daniel 3:1-6 (NIV)

There are other images people hold of God; these are images of people, they include images of fathers, religious leaders (called by various names), political or national leaders and so on. God does not approve of these too. The scripture says:

“But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ” Matthew. 23:8-10 (KJV)

These figures have held many people in “mind captivity” all over the ages. People have related to God according to how they perceived or related to these “god figures”. For example, when we say God is our father, the image of an earthly father pops up. If people had a good “father – child” relationship, they are glad and happy with God as father; they recoil, if they had a harrowing experience with an earthly father; at that point they are bemuses about the idea that God can be a father.

There had been many religious leaders or leadership institution that people adore and honour. They represent God in people’s minds; they become images that people hold in highest esteem. People call them leaders, fathers, God sent, and many other names like that. These in many instances posed great dangers, given their human frailty; in many cases these “god figures” had succumbed to their human weakness and wrecked the faith of many people. Those occasions have driven many people away from God; in some cases some people who were established in faith had abandon their faith in God completely. The church history is chequered with a lot of these experiences and it has made evangelism difficult in many places.

There have been great leaders who came to leadership with great zeal and fervour. They had great accomplishments but failed to deliver in morals and were not accurate in judgement in some decisions; they failed the test of being “gods”. Their followers usually get discouraged and disappointed. The unfortunate thing  is that many people pass on this experience to God. They see God as inadequate and unable to deliver on his promises.

Men are not gods and there are no gods except the almighty God. Men who play god are in error and should stop; the glories derived from such efforts are false. Great men of God are still men and subject to the passions of men. People should wipe off the god images they hold of other people both physically and mentally. This will save them from error, pain and mental agony that accompany human failures that belittle people including the “god figures”.

God almighty through Jesus Christ has made himself available to all people. Those who seek him find him. The scripture says,

“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jer. 29:12-13 (NIV)

It is true that God has placed people along our part to help us in our relationship with him; we should appreciate and honour them but we are never allowed to see them as God. They are not.

 

Hearing from God – Prophesy

First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pi...

First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pitsak, a Medieval Armenian scribe and miniaturist (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hearing from God is very important in the life of every believer. Hearing from God is not a one-sided thing, it is not only a human desire; God wants to speak to his children. That means that it is something that is readily available to everyone who desires to hear God. All you need to do is position yourself rightly and you will enjoy this fellowship with God.

God speaks to us through prophesy. In prophesy God sends a message to you through someone else. This is a very common way that God used in the lives of the Israelites. It is commonly identifiable in the Bible.

“The Sovereign Lord never does anything without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets. When a lion roars, who can keep from being afraid? When the Sovereign Lord speaks, who can keep from proclaiming his message The Sovereign Lord never does anything without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets. When a lion roars, who can keep from being afraid? When the Sovereign Lord speaks, who can keep from proclaiming his message? Amos 3: 7-8 (GNT)

God appointed prophets whom he used to convey his purpose to his people. “The Lord spoke to Jeremiah in the thirteenth year that Josiah son of Amon was king of Judah, and he spoke to him again when Josiah’s son Jehoiakim was king. After that, the Lord spoke to him many times, until the eleventh year of the reign of Zedekiah son of Josiah. In the fifth month of that year the people of Jerusalem were taken into exile.” Jer. 1: 2-3 (GNT)

The proof of prophesy is that it must not mislead the people of God; it must not contradict the revealed “absolute truths” of the word of God, (for example, the fact that there is one God is an absolute truth, the sinfulness of man and the need for his salvation through Jesus Christ is an absolute truth.) All prophesies are proved by their fulfilment. All prophesies lead people to God.

Prophesy as a gift is different from the office of a prophet. Prophesy comes anytime God communicates in that manner. It can come from the prophet or someone God chooses to use. The prophet stands in the office to constantly point God’s people to the direction God wants them to follow. This does not mean the ability to see through people or the ability to always have something about the future to say to every person that comes around. Christian prophesies is not clairvoyance; these are different and far-apart as far as Christianity is concerned. In fact God forbids believers from associating with clairvoyance.

“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft,  or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you.” Dt. 18:10-12 (NIV)

I know many people are drown towards seeking prophesies and prophets as an obsession; however, this means of God speaking to people is as normal as any other way God chooses to use to speak to you. Prophesy is one of the most abused Christian experiences and some people have used it to exploit others. It has been used to intimidate and scare people all over the ages against the will of God. False prophets are common everywhere and many of them are so crafty that it takes discernment and the help of the Holy Spirit to escape their antics.

God is interested in the lives of his people and is ever will to guide and help them.  The scripture says:

“Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture” Psalm 100:3 (NIV)

All who desire to hear from God must learn to worship and praise God. They must learn to pray and study the Bible. They must learn to wait on the Lord and be eager to obey him.

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